Nigeria: Who Negotiated The ‘Non-Negotiable Unity’?

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By Sam Asowata
Those who do not think have concluded that Nigeria is united. They cannot prove how. They cannot present the evidence. They cannot tender the Unification Documents. They cannot wave the signatures. They name no desert, or ocean, or forest, or city, or the hall or auditorium where the Unity brainstorming took place. As for the day(s), date(s), month(s) and year(s), they remain dead…. Or dumb, to be kind.

Is AMALGAMATION a synonym for UNIFICATION? Is amalgamation the same as unity?

Britain amalgamated its Southern and the Northern Protectorate and Lagos and called them “Nigeria”. But what input did the diverse peoples in the British dominion contribute to the amalgamation? Were they consulted? Was their consent sought? Was there a referendum, the sort that excised Southern Cameroon from Nigeria and attached the people to Cameroon?

Who were the leaders of Edo people, the Yoruba, Ijaw, Urhobo, Hausa, Fulani, Ibira, Tiv, Idoma, Ika,Mumuye, Itsekiri and all the other races and tribes before, and during British insult? Were they ‘ruler-less’? Did they prove unable to govern themselves and, therefore, happily acquiesced to the British downgrading, mounting and being ridden, roughshod like a wild horse?

1914! That was the year that the British, and their tool, Frederick Lizard, took a twine and tied more than three hundred tongues together. And the fools, long after the mischief makers were chased off their mischief by the fools, are still calling their overloading and mis-loading “Unity”; divine and, most idiotic and annoying, “non-negotiable”!

And, even before Britain fled from the “Nigerian” Nationalists, did they ask the peoples of their colony if they had anything in common, or whether they share ideals, aspirations or ambitions? Did they ask Anthony Enahoro, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Obafemi Awolowo, Samuel Ikoku, and the others if they would like to continue as One United Country when, finally, forced colonial rule died?

And did the Independence Warriors debate the issue, either via a plebiscite, or opinion poll or a referendum? If ‘yes’, then what was the verdict? Did they sanction the bonding of their disparate races, tribes, tongues, religions, aspirations and ambitions? No!
How, then, did this “non-negotiable unity” of inequities and inequalities birth itself?

Apart from today’s mad and maddening “geopolitical zones” and “federal character” and “quota system”, why two separate ‘laws’ for Southern and Northern students desirous of being admitted into Federal Government Colleges, alias “Unity” Schools?
Why should those from the Southern States of Anambra score a compulsory 139 over 200; the Abia child 129; the Edo one 127, all over 200, to be admitted, while their fellow students/candidates from Borno, Zamfara, Taraba and Kaduna States, all in the North, need to score only 2, 3, 4 and 67, respectively, to be admitted into the same school, and to be issued with the same certificates?

Why should Northerners, who largely abhor “Western Education” label themselves “Educationally Disadvantaged” only to be pampered with preferential treatment, while Western Education crazy States are punished by being made to score infinitely higher marks than their Northern “neighbours”?

Unity! When African slaves regained freedom in the United States of America, did they ask for “geopolitical zones”, or “federal character”, or “quota system”? Did they whine that they were “educationally” disadvantaged by their previous bondage? Did they agitate for preferential treatment such as Nigeria has granted students from Northern Nigeria? But has stiff competition with their white compatriots not produced the first black President, namely, Barack Hussein Obama, the racial barricade buster?

“Affirmative Action”, or EQUAL TREATMENT”! This was what the former African SLAVES demanded from the Government of The United States of America when FREEDOM set them FREE, using a tool called President Abraham Lincoln. …..

The United States are UNITED!
The CREATED and CARVED OUT States of Nigeria are only deceiving themselves.

Sam Asowata is a Journalist. He lives in Abuja.

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